Audrey is growing like crazy and we have had some issues with ear infections since January.. She's had 8 to be exact. For my wife and I, balancing work and trying to ensure Audrey is happy and healthy has been a challenge at certain points. My mom has been able to drop everything she's doing and come to take care of Audrey while my wife and I attended to some things we couldn't reschedule. We are very lucky she was able to come and help us get Audrey over her ear infection and on the road to recovery.
To to thank my mom and give her a more special one of a kind gift, I built her a keepsake/jewelery box out of sapele and birch hardwood I had in my shop.
I milled the stock in March and cut the miters using my small miter/crosscut sled and taped the corners together to test the squareness with great results. I then put the project aside for awhile as other things with work and coaching sports came up.
Fast forward to June and the box, still taped together, stayed square the entire time with no visible movement in the grain what so ever! This is one of the reasons I really like working with sapele. It's a well behaved wood with exceptional grain patterns. I cut dados in the top and bottom of the box sides for the lid and base panels.
I began thinking of a good contrasting wood that will accentuate the grain pattern of the sapele. I was looking through my veneer pieces and came across a great piece of birch veneer that I decided to go with. The veneer process went really well but for some reason I lost my photos of that process. If you go back through to a few other boxes I've made you'll see that procedure.
I glued the box mitres with the top and bottom birch veneered panels in it and let it dry overnight. Then, the splines were laid out and cut into the corners. I found an old piece of birch sitting in my shop that worked for the splines and the birch liner to allow the box lid to open and close.
After some sanding through the grits up to 320 grit, the grain pattern of the sapele really stood out with tiger stripes the went across the grain vertically. An awesome surprise to see!
After mineral spirits dried, I finished the box with two coats of tung oil which really made the grain pop!
Here's a quick video of the wood as the Tung Oil is being applied. I suppose this would be a good time to have you check out my instagram page!
I love the way this box turned out and I hope you do to.
Happy Birthday Mom! Thanks for all of your help and support. My wife and I really do appreciate you and hope this box is a reminder of our appreciation. Love you.
Thanks for for checking out my work! Audrey is going to be just fine. We've been told she will have tubes put into her ears this fall. Hopefully no more infections!!
I went camping last weekend for my wife's family reunion in a cool place called Kootenay plains near to the North Saskatchewan River Crossing just outside of Banff national park. The place is frequented with campers and is pretty much the last place I've been that still does not have cellular connectivity or any other utilities in that area. This was a great opportunity to experiment with wood carving chisels and some Basswood!
Basswood is an interesting species because of its resistance to tear out when you carve across the grain or change directions with your carving path mid cut. So long as your chisels are sharp, the wood handles newbies and experienced carvers remarkably well with positive results. Check out my carvings from camping this past July long weekend!
I carved two patterns, one of a tree image that I found online and adapted to suit my caving interest and of course, Darth Vader!
Both carvings turned out really well and tested my skills using chisels that I first had to figure out how to sharpen. I found an old set of Marples chisels that had been sitting in my shop at work that badly needed some TLC. Once I ground the edges and honed them following the angle of the cut as best I could, I stropped them with my leather strop which made them exceptionally sharp! Then cutting the profile and hogging out material went pretty smoothly!
More projects work is coming! Thanks for continuing to check out my work and support me by clicking on an ad or two. It goes a long way and I really appreciate the support!
HAPPY BELATED CANADA DAY! And of course, to my American followers, I hope you had a safe and productive Independence Day!
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